Don't Panic Quotes
"You know," said Roosta, "you know, Beeblebrox. You want to meet the man who rules the Universe."
''Can he cook?'', said Zaphod. On reflection he added: ''I doubt if he can. If he could cook a good meal he wouldn't worry about the rest of the Universe. I want to meet a cook.''
Trin Tragula - for that was his name - was a dreamer, a thinker, speculative philosopher or, as his wife would have it, an idiot.
''Oh,'' said Arthur brightly, ''you mean we've travelled in time but not in space.''
''Listen you semi-evolved simian,'' cut in Zaphod, ''go climb a tree will you?''
''Go bang your heads together four-eyes,'' he advised Zaphod.
''No, no,'' the waiter said to Zaphod, ''your monkey has got it right, sir.''
''But what about the End of the Universe? We'll miss the big moment.''
''I've seen it. It's rubbish,'' said Zaphod, ''nothing but a gnab gib.''
''Opposite of a big bang. Come on, let's get zappy.''
The History of every major Galactic Civilization tends to pass through three distinct and recognizable phases, those of Survival, Inquiry and Sophistication, otherwise known as the How, Why and Where phases.
For instance, the first phase is characterized by the question ''How can we eat?'', the second by the question ''Why do we eat?'' and the third by the question, ''Where shall we have lunch?''
''I wonder who this ship belongs to anyway,'' said Arthur.
''Me,'' said Zaphod.
''No. Who it really belongs to.''
''Really me,'' insisted Zaphod, ''look, property is theft, right?
Therefore theft is property. Therefore this ship is mine, OK?''
It is worth repeating at this point the theories that Ford had come up with, on his first encounter with human beings, to account for their peculiar habit of continually stating and restating the very very obvious, as it 'It's a nice day,'' or ''You're very tall,'' or ''So this is it, we're going to die.''
''Ford,'' he said, ''how many escape capsules are there?''
''None,'' said Ford.
''Did you count them?'' he yelled.
''Twice,'' said Ford
''Your God person puts an apple tree in the middle of a garden and says do what you like guys, oh, but don't eat the apple. Surprise surprise, they eat it and he leaps out from behind a bush shouting `Gotcha'. It wouldn't have made any difference if they hadn't eaten it.''
''Because if you're dealing with somebody who has the sort of mentality which likes leaving hats on the pavement with bricks under them you know perfectly well they won't give up. They'll get you in the end.''
His mouth started to speak, but his brain decided it hadn't got anything to say yet and shut it again. His brain then started to contend with the problem of what his eyes told it they were looking at, but in doing so relinquished control of the mouth which promptly fell open again. Once more gathering up the jaw, his brain lost control of his left hand which then wandered around in an aimless fashion. For a second or so the brain tried to catch the left hand without letting go of the mouth and simultaneously tried to think about what was buried in the ice, which is probably why the legs went and Arthur dropped restfully to the ground.
Encounters of The Third Kind
The alien creature frowned briefly and consulted what appeared to be some species of clipboard which he was holding in his thin and spindly alien hand.
''Arthur Dent?'' it said.
Arthur nodded helplessly.
''Arthur Philip Dent?'' pursued the alien in a kind of efficient yap.
''Er ... er ... yes ... er ... er,'' confirmed Arthur.
''You're a jerk,'' repeated the alien, ''a complete asshole.''
The creature nodded to itself, made a peculiar alien tick on its clipboard and turned briskly back towards the ship.
''The dew,'' he observed, ''has clearly fallen with a particularly sickening thud this morning.''
You may not instantly see why I bring the subject up, but that is because my mind works so phenomenally fast, and I am at a rough estimate thirty billion times more intelligent than you. Let me give you an example. Think of a number, any number.''
''Er, five,'' said the mattress.
''Wrong,'' said Marvin. ''You see?''
The mattress was much impressed by this and realized that it was in the presence of a not unremarkable mind. It willomied along its entire length, sending excited little ripples through its shallow algae-covered pool.
the following is a mirror of http://www-personal.umd.umich.edu/~nhughes/dna/faqs/quotedir.html:
Douglas Adams Quote Directory
by Nick Humphries, firstname.lastname@example.org
The Hitchhikers Guide To The Galaxy
"`...You hadn't exactly gone out of your way to call attention to them had you? I mean like actually telling anyone or anything.'
`But the plans were on display...'
`On display? I eventually had to go down to the cellar to find them.'
`That's the display department.'
`With a torch.'
`Ah, well the lights had probably gone.'
`So had the stairs.'
`But look you found the notice didn't you?'
`Yes,' said Arthur, `yes I did. It was on display in the bottom of a locked filing cabinet stuck in a disused lavatory with a sign on the door saying "Beware of The Leopard".'"
-- Arthur singing the praises of the local council planning department.
"`Time is an illusion. Lunchtime doubly so.'
`Very deep,' said Arthur, `you should send that in to the "Reader's Digest". They've got a page for people like you.'"
-- Ford convincing Arthur to drink three pints in ten minutes at lunchtime.
"`This must be Thursday,' said Arthur to himself, sinking low over his beer, `I never could get the hang of Thursdays.'"
-- Arthur, on what was to be his last Thursday on Earth.
"Pages one and two [of Zaphod's presidential speech] had been salvaged by a Damogran Frond Crested Eagle and had already become incorporated into an extraordinary new form of nest which the eagle had invented. It was constructed largely of papier mache and it was virtually impossible for a newly hatched baby eagle to break out of it. The Damogran Frond Crested Eagle had heard of the notion of survival of the species but wanted no truck with it."
-- An example of Damogran wildlife.
"`How do you feel?' he asked him.
`Like a military academy,' said Arthur, `bits of me keep passing out.'" ....
`We're safe,' he said.
`Oh good,' said Arthur.
`We're in a small galley cabin,' said Ford, `in one of the spaceships of the Vogon Constructor Fleet.'
`Ah,' said Arthur, `this is obviously some strange usage of the word "safe" that I wasn't previously aware of.'
-- Arthur after his first ever teleport ride.
"`The best way to get a drink out of a Vogon is to stick your finger down his throat...'"
-- The Book, on one of the Vogon's social inadequacies.
"`You'd better be prepared for the jump into hyperspace. It's unpleasently like being drunk.'
`What's so unpleasent about being drunk?'
`You ask a glass of water.'"
-- Arthur getting ready for his first jump into hyperspace.
"`You know,' said Arthur, `it's at times like this, when I'm trapped in a Vogon airlock with a man from Betelgeuse, and about to die from asphyxiation in deep space that I really wish I'd listened to what my mother told me when I was young.'
`Why, what did she tell you?'
`I don't know, I didn't listen.'"
-- Arthur coping with certain death as best as he could.
"`Ford, you're turning into a penguin. Stop it.'"
-- Arthur experiences the improbability drive at work.
"`I think you ought to know that I'm feeling very depressed.'"
"`Life, don't talk to me about life.'"
"`Here I am, brain the size of a planet and they ask me to take you down to the bridge. Call that "job satisfaction"? 'Cos I don't.'"
"`I've got this terrible pain in all the diodes down my left side.'"
-- Guess who.
"`If there's anything more important than my ego around, I want it caught and shot now.'"
"`In those days spirits were brave, the stakes were high, men were REAL men, women were REAL women, and small furry creatures from Alpha Centauri were REAL small furry creatures from Aplha Centauri.'"
-- The Book getting all nostalgic.
"`Hey this is terrific!' Zaphod said. `Someone down there is trying to kill us!'
`Terrific,' said Arthur.
`But don't you see what this means?'
`Yes. We are going to die.'
`Yes, but apart from that.'
`APART from that?'
`It means we must be on to something!'
`How soon can we get off it?'"
-- Zaphod and Arthur in a certain death situation over Magrathea.
"And wow! Hey! What's this thing coming towards me very fast? Very very fast. So big and flat and round, it needs a big wide sounding word like... ow... ound... round... ground! That's it! That's a good name - ground!
I wonder if it will be friends with me?"
-- For the sperm whale, it wasn't.
"Oh no, not again."
-- A bowl of petunias on it's way to certain death.
"`Er, hey Earthman...'
`Arthur,' said Arthur.
`Yeah, could you just sort of keep this robot with you and guard this end of the passageway. OK?'
`Guard?' said Arthur. `What from? You just said there's no one here.'
`Yeah, well, just for safety, OK?' said Zaphod.
`Whose? Yours or mine?'"
-- Arthur drawing the short straw on Magrathea.
"There are of course many problems connected with life, of which some of the most popular are `Why are people born?' `Why do they die?' `Why do they spend so much of the intervening time wearing digital watches?'"
-- The Book.
"`Right,' said Ford, `I'm going to have a look.'
He glanced round at the others.
`Is no one going to say, "No you can't possibly, let me go instead"?'
They all shook their heads.
-- Ford attempting to be heroic whilst being seiged by Shooty and Bangbang.
The Restaurant at the End of the Universe
"In the beginning the Universe was created. This has made a lot of people very angry and been widely regarded as a bad move."
-- The Book just racapping what happened in the last book.
"`I am so amazingly cool you could keep a side of meat in me for a month. I am so hip I have difficulty seeing over my pelvis.'"
-- Zaphod being cool.
"`You ARE Zaphod Beeblebrox?'
`Yeah,' said Zaphod, `but don't shout it out or they'll all want one.'
`THE Zaphod Beeblebrox?'
`No, just A Zaphod Bebblebrox, didn't you hear I come in six packs?'
`But sir,' it squealed, `I just heard on the sub-ether radio report. It said you were dead...'
`Yeah, that's right, I just haven't stopped moving yet.'"
-- Zaphod and the Guide's receptionist.
"The fronting for the eighty-yard long marble-topped bar had been made by stitching together nearly twenty thousand Antarean Mosaic Lizard skins, despite the fact that the twenty thousand lizards concerned had needed them to keep their insides in."
-- The Book decribing Milliways' politically incorrect decor.
"`...and the Universe,' continued the waiter, determined not to be deflected on his home stretch, `will explode later for your pleasure.'
Ford's head swivelled slowly towards him. He spoke with feeling.
`Wow,' he said, `What sort of drinks do you serve in this place?'
The waiter laughed a polite little waiter's laugh.
`Ah,' he said, `I think sir has perhaps misunderstood me.'
`Oh, I hope not,' breathed Ford."
-- Ford in paradise.
"Zaphod grinned two manic grins, sauntered over to the bar and bought most of it."
-- Zaphod in paradise.
"`Maybe somebody here tipped off the Galactic Police,' said Trillian. `Everybody saw you come in.'
`You mean they want to arrest me over the phone?' said Zaphod, `Could be. I'm a pretty dangerous dude when I'm cornered.'
`Yeah,' said a voice from under the table [Ford's now completely rat- arsed at this point], `you go to pieces so fast people get hit by the shrapnel.'"
-- Zaphod getting paranoid over a phone call.
"`Hand me the rap-rod, Plate Captain.'
The little waiter's eyebrows wandered about his forehead in confusion.
`I beg your pardon, sir?' he said.
`The phone, waiter,' said Zaphod, grabbing it off him. `Shee, you guys are so unhip it's a wonder your bums don't fall off.'"
-- Zaphod discovers that waiters are the least hip people in the Universe.
"The main reception foyer was almost empty but Ford nevertheless weaved his way through it."
-- Ford making his way out of Milliways whilst under the influence of enough alchol to make a rhino sing.
"`The first ten million years were the worst,' said Marvin, `and the second ten million, they were the worst too. The third ten million I didn't enjoy at all. After that I went into a bit of a decline.'"
-- Marvin reflecting back on his 576,000,003,579 year career as Milliways' car park attendent.
"`Incidentally,' he said, `what does teleport mean?'
Another moment passed.
Slowly, the others turned to face him.
`Probably the wrong moment to ask,' said Arthur, `It's just I remember you use the word a short while ago and I only bring it up because...'
`Where,' said Ford quietly, `does it say teleport?'
`Well, just over here in fact,' said Arthur, pointing at a dark control box in the rear of the cabin, `Just under the word "emergency", above the word "system" and beside the sign saying "out of order".'"
-- Arthur finding an escape route from a certain death situation.
"I teleported home one night
With Ron and Sid and Meg.
Ron stole Meggie's heart away
And I got Sidney's leg."
-- A poem about matter transference beams.
"Anyone who is capable of getting themselves made President should on no account be allowed to do the job."
-- Some wisdom from The Book.
"`We've got to find out what people want from fire, how they relate to it, what sort of image it has for them.'
The crowd were tense. They were expecting something wonderful from Ford.
`Stick it up your nose,' he said.
`Which is precisely the sort of thing we need to know,' insisted the girl, `Do people want fire that can be fitted nasally?'"
-- Ford "debating" what to do with fire with a marketing girl.
Original Hitchhiker Radio Scripts
"The story goes that I first had the idea for THHGTTG while lying drunk in a field in Innsbruck (or `Spain' as the BBC TV publicity department authorititively has it, probably because it's easier to spell)."
-- Foreward by DNA.
FORD Six pints of bitter. And quickly please, the world's about to
BARMAN Oh yes, sir? Nice weather for it.
-- Fit the First.
BOOK Meanwhile, the starship has landed on the surface of Magrathea
and Trillian is about to make one of the most important
statements of her life. Its importance is not immediately
recognised by her companions.
TRILL. Hey, my white mice have escaped.
ZAPHOD Nuts to your white mice.
-- Fit the Third.
BOOK ...Man had always assumed that he was more intelligent than
dolphins because he had achieved so much... the wheel, New York,
wars, and so on, whilst all the dolphins had ever done was muck
about in the water having a good time. But conversely the
dolphins believed themselves to be more intelligent than man for
precisely the same reasons.
-- Fit the Third.
"Another section inspired by American TV - this time `Starsky and Hutch'. In this show the heroes claimed that they did care about people getting shot, so they crashed their cars into them instead."
-- DNA on the origins of Shooty and Bang Bang in Fit the Fourth.
ARTHUR What is an Algolian Zylatburger anyway?
FORD They're a kind of meatburger made from the most unpleasant parts
of a creature well known for its total lack of any pleasant
ARTHUR So you mean that the Universe does actually end not with a bang
but with a Wimpy?
-- Cut dialogue from Fit the Fifth.
BOOK There is a theory which states that if ever anyone discovers
exactly what the Universe is for and why it is here, it will
instantly disappear and be replaced by something even more
There is another theory which states that this has already happened.
-- Introduction to Fit the Seventh.
FORD Tell me Arthur...
FORD This boulder we're stuck under, how big would you say it was? Roughly?
ARTHUR Oh, about the size of Coventry Cathedral.
FORD Do you think we could move it? (Arthur doesn't reply) Just asking.
-- Ford and Arthur in a tricky situation, Fit the Eighth.
BOOK What to do if you find yourself stuck in a crack in the ground
underneath a giant boulder you can't move, with no hope of
rescue. Consider how lucky you are that life has been good to
you so far. Alternatively, if life hasn't been good to you so
far, which given your current circumstances seems more likely,
consider how lucky you are that it won't be troubling you much
-- Comforting advice for Ford and Arthur in this current situation, Fit the Eighth.
ZAPHOD Hey, this rock...
FORD Ice-covered marble...
ZAPHOD Right... it's as slippery as... as... What's the slipperiest
thing you can think of?
FORD At the moment? This marble.
ZAPHOD Right. This marble is as slippery as this marble.
-- Zaphod and Ford trying to get a grip on things in Brontitall, Fit the Tenth.
ARTHUR It's not a question of whose habitat it is, it's a question of
how hard you hit it.
-- Arthur pointing out one of the disadvantages of gravity, Fit the Tenth.
ARTHUR It probably seems a terrible thing to say, but you know what I
sometimes think would be useful in these situations?
ARTHUR A gun of some sort.
LINT.2 Will this help?
ARTHUR What is it?
LINT.2 A gun of some sort.
ARTHUR Oh, that'll help. Can you make it fire?
F/X DEAFENING ROAR
-- Arthur and the Lintillas gaining the upper hand, Fit the Twelfth.
Life, the Universe and Everything
"He stood up straight and looked the world squarely in the fields and hills. To add weight to his words he stuck the rabbit bone in his hair. He spread his arms out wide. `I will go mad!' he announced."
-- Arthur discovering a way of coping with life on Prehistoric Earth.
"`... then I decided that I was a lemon for a couple of weeks. I kept myself amused all that time jumping in and out of a gin and tonic.'
Arthur cleared his throat, and then did it again.
`Where,' he said, `did you...?'
`Find a gin and tonic?' said Ford brightly. `I found a small lake that thought it was a gin and tonic, and jumped in and out of that. At least, I think it thought it was a gin and tonic.'
`I may,' he addded with a grin which would have sent sane men scampering into the trees, `have been imagining it.'"
-- Ford updating Arthur about what he's been doing for the past four years.
"`Eddies,' said Ford, `in the space-time continuum.'
`Ah,' nodded Arthur, `is he? Is he?'"
-- Arthur failing in his first lesson of galactic physics in four years.
"Ford grabbed him by the lapels of his dressing gown and spoke to him as slowly and distinctly and patiently as if he were somebody from a telephone company accounts department."
-- Ford trying to rectify that situation.
"...[Arthur] leapt to his feet like an author hearing the phone ring..."
-- Who says that the character of Arthur isn't autobiographical?
"Arthur's consciousness approached his body as from a great distance, and reluctantly. It had had some bad times in there. Slowly, nervously, it entered and settled down into its accustomed position.
Arthur sat up.
`Where am I?' he said.
`Lord's Cricket Ground,' said Ford.
`Fine,' said Arthur, and his consciousness stepped out again for a quick breather. His body flopped back on the grass."
-- Arthur coping with his return to Earth as best as he could.
"`A curse,' said Slartibartfast, `which will engulf the Galaxy in fire and destruction, and possibly bring the Universe to a premature doom. I mean it,' he added.
`Sounds like a bad time,' said Ford, `with luck I'll be drunk enough not to notice.'"
-- Ford ensuring everyone knew where his priorities lay.
"`My doctor says that I have a malformed public-duty gland and a natural deficiency in moral fibre, and that I am therefore excused from saving Universes.'"
-- Ford's last ditch attempt to get out of helping Slartibartfast.
"Trillian did a little research in the ship's copy of THHGTTG. It had some advice to offer on drunkenness.
`Go to it,' it said, `and good luck.'
It was cross-referenced to the entry concerning the size of the Universe and ways of coping with that."
-- One of the more preferable pieces of advice contained in the Guide.
"His eyes seemed to be popping out of his head. He wasn't certain if this was because they were trying to see more clearly, or if they simply wanted to leave at this point."
-- Arthur trying to see who had diverted him from going to a party.
"Arthur yawed wildly as his skin tried to jump one way and his skeleton the other, whilst his brain tried to work out which of his ears it most wanted to crawl out of.
`Bet you weren't expecting to see me again,' said the monster, which Arthur couldn't help thinking was a strange remark for it to make, seeing as he had never met the creature before. He could tell that he hadn't met the creature before from the simple fact that he was able to sleep at nights."
-- Arthur discovering who had diverted him from going to a party.
"`That young girl is one of the least benightedly unintelligent organic life forms it has been my profound lack of pleasure not to be able to avoid meeting.'"
-- Marvin's first ever compliment about anybody.
"Arthur hoped and prayed that there wasn't an afterlife. Then he realised there was a contradiction there and merely hoped that there wasn't an afterlife."
-- Arthur realising that he's in a certain death situation with a supernova bomb that is shaped like a cricket ball.
So Long, and Thanks for all the Fish
"`Credit?' he said. `Aaaargggh...'
These two words are usually coupled together in the Old Pink Dog Bar."
-- Ford in a spot of bother.
"`...we might as well start with where your hand is now.'
Arthur said, `So which way do I go?'
`Down,' said Fenchurch, `on this occaision.'
He moved his hand.
`Down,' she said, `is in fact the other way.'
-- Arthur trying to discover which part of Fenchurch is wrong.
"There was a point to this story, but it has temporarily escaped the chronicler's mind."
-- This line perhaps best sums up the whole book.
"The last time anybody made a list of the top hundred character attributes of New Yorkers, common sense snuck in at number 79. ....
When it's fall in New York, the air smells as if someone's been frying goats in it, and if you are keen to breathe the best plan is to open a window and stick your head in a building."
-- Nuff said??
"`What's been happening here?' he demanded.
`Oh just the nicest things, sir, just the nicest things. can I sit on your lap please?'"
"`Colin, I am going to abandon you to your fate.'
`I'm so happy.'"
"`It will be very, very nasty for you, and that's just too bad. Got it?'
`I gurgle with pleasure.'"
-- Ford and Colin the robot.
"What the hell, he thought, you're only young once, and threw himself out of the window. That would at least keep the element of surprise on his side."
-- Ford outwitting a Vogon with a rocket launcher by going into another certain death situation.
"The major difference between a thing that might go wrong and a thing that cannot possibly go wrong is that when a thing that cannot possibly go wrong goes wrong it usually turns out to be impossible to get at or repair."
-- One of the laws of computers and programming revealed.
"`You know they've reintroduced the death penalty for insurance company directors?'
`Really?' said Arthur. `No I didn't. For what offence?'
`What do you mean, offence?'
-- Evidence that there will be some justice in the Universe eventually.
"`She hit me on the head with the rock again.'
`I think I can confirm that that was my daughter.'
`You have to get to know her,' said Arthur.
`She eases up does she?'
`No,' said Arthur, `but you get a better sense of when to duck.'"
-- Ford and Arthur on Random.
Dirk Gently's Holistic Detective Agency
"So after a hectic week of believing that war was peace, that good was bad, that the moon was made of blue cheese, and that God needed a lot of money sent to a certain box number, the Monk started to believe that thirty-five percent of all tables were hermaphrodites, and then broke down."
-- An Electric Monk has a few problems.
"`Well,' said Reg, in a loudly confidential whisper, as if introducing the subject of nipple-piercing in a nunnery..."
-- Reg going into "tactful" mode.
"He believed in a door. He must find that door. The door was the way to... to...
The Door was The Way.
Capital letters were always the best way of dealing with things you didn't have a good answer to."
-- The Electric Monk discovering the reason why there are so many acronyms in computing.
"He had extracted himself from the Cambridge one-way system by the usual method, which involved going round and round it faster and faster until he achieved a sort of escape velocity and flew off at a tangent in a random direction."
-- Quantum transport physics explained.
"`Well, I hope you had a lousy evening.'
`I did,' said Richard. `You wouldn't have liked it. There was a horse in the bathroom, and you know you hate that sort of thing.'"
-- Richard coping with a wierd evening as best as he could.
"Richard was loking at the bird as if it was the most extraordinary thing he had ever seen in his life, and the bird was looking at Richard as if defying him to find its beak even remotely funny."
-- Richard encounters some historical rain forest wildlife.
"`If it looks like a duck, and quacks like a duck, we have at least to consider the possibility that we have a small aquatic bird of the family anatidae on our hands.'"
-- Words of wisdom from Dirk.
The Long Dark Tea-Time of the Soul
"The beak was a major piece of armoury. It was a beak that would frighten any animal on earth, even one that was already dead and in a tin."
-- Dirk encounters the eagle/fighter plane on his own doorstep.
"Dennis Hutch had stepped up into the top seat when its founder had died of a lethal overdose of brick wall, taken while under the influence of a Ferrari and a bottle of tequila."
-- A brief resume of the career of a record company magnate.
Last Chance To See...
"`Could we perhaps take a snake bite detector with us to Komodo?'
`Course you can, course you can. Take as many as you like. Won't do you a blind bit of good because they're only for Australian snakes.'
`So what do we do if we get bitten by something deadly, then?'
He blinked at me as if I was stupid.
`Well what do you think you do?' he said. `You die of course. That's what deadly means.'"
-- DNA failing to spot the obvious.
"`You're proposing twenty hours on a boat...'
`A small boat,' added Mark.
`On violently heaving seas...'
`With a three-day-old dead goat.'
`I hardly know what to say.'"
-- DNA learning what fun awaits him on the way to Komodo.
"Mark turned and asked a pasenger behind us if these planes ever crashed. Oh yes, he was told, but not to worry - there hadn't been a serious crash now in months."
-- Mark being reassured of Bali airline safety.
"Virtually everything we were told in Indonesia turned out not to be true, sometimes almost immediately. The only exception to this was when we were told that something would happen immediately, in which case it turned out not to be true over an extended period of time."
"Komodo dragons sleep headfirst in large burrows. It is a very, very, very bad idea to even think of pulling its tail."
"`There was one kea nest that was found which the birds had started to build in 1958. In 1965 they were still sorting it out and adding bits to it but hadn't actually moved in yet. Bit like you in that respect.'"
-- Mark telling DNA some kea facts. Anyone know what the last sentence refers to?
Last updated 01/18/00